Posts Tagged ‘Hugh Jackman’

Good Opinion piece on Transcendental Meditation

June 9, 2019

I enjoyed reading Louise O’Neill‘s well-written Opinion piece on TM published Friday, June 07, 2019 in the Irish Examiner. Her experiences with other meditations in the past contrasted markedly when she finally took up the natural and effortless practice of Transcendental Meditation.

Louise O’Neill is the award-winning author of Only Ever Yours, Asking for It, Almost Love and The Surface Breaks, with a reputation for hard-hitting books tackling feminist themes.

‘For years now, I’ve been reading and hearing about Transcendental Meditation’

My first ever experience of meditation was in the prayer room in my secondary school; a class of 20 girls lying down on the floor, listening to our religion teacher read out a guided meditation. (Most of us using it as an opportunity to take a sneaky nap, let’s be real.) 

I didn’t think any more about it until, in my first year of university, I saw a flyer advertising a short course in mindfulness and it was there that I learned a very basic form of meditation — following the breath, in and out.

Coming back to the breath when my mind began to wander. The breath was the only thing that mattered.

This focus on the breath was never something that came naturally to me, although I worked hard at it. I went to an ashram in India to learn more. I joined a Buddhist meditation group in New York and went to weekly meetings, jostling for space in that cramped room above a fast food chain in downtown Manhattan. 

I took up yoga, I bought the Calm app and the Insight Timer app and the Headspace app. I would try to take 10 minutes every morning to focus on my breathing, and sometimes it would feel wonderful — my mind would be clear, my breathing slow and regular — and other days, it would feel like I was fighting an uphill battle, one eye on the clock, waiting for the buzzer to ring and release me from my torment.

For years now, I’ve been reading and hearing about Transcendental Meditation. TM is a non-religious meditation that was developed by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. It was popularised in the west in the late 60s when The Beatles undertook a TM training course in India, later denouncing drugs in favour of the meditation and crediting TM for the fertile period of creativity that followed. 

Since then, it seems to have become the meditation of choice for celebrities all over the world. Oprah Winfrey paid for 400 of her employees to take the TM course, declaring: “I’m a 1,000% better person if I do (TM)”. Others such as Jerry Seinfeld, David Lynch, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Ellen DeGeneres have all praised the practice for increasing productivity, making them more efficient and less reactive, boosting energy levels and improving their quality of sleep. 

Their claims have been backed up by hundreds of peer-reviewed medical studies, and every time I would read such a testimonial, I would promise myself that I would investigate further. It wasn’t until a friend told me that she found her TM practice incredibly helpful in easing her anxiety that I decided to take a leap of faith and get in contact with the Cork branch of TM Ireland.

Stewart and Nora Anne Luck are a married couple who have been practicing and teaching Transcendental Meditation for years, both here and abroad. 

I met with Stewart (everyone who is interested in learning the technique is encouraged to attend a free introductory session beforehand) and found him to be a gentle, calming presence, as well as being someone who is clearly very passionate about the value of Transcendental Meditation and its ability to change not only our own lives, but to transform the entire world.

For the next four days, I met with Nora Anne for an hour-and-a-half lesson each day. She gave me a mantra; one that I am told is for me only. (Am I very immature that I find this oddly thrilling? It’s like a secret password in a Famous Five novel.) 

We meet again a week later for a check-up, and another session is pencilled into the diary for a month after that again. In order to get the full benefit, I am encouraged to sit quietly and repeat my mantra silently for 20 minutes, twice a day. Once in the morning and once again in the late afternoon/evening, in order to give me an extra boost of energy to enjoy the remainder of my day. And that’s it.

What has surprised me so far is how unbelievably easy I’ve found the practice to be. TM is supposed to be natural and effortless, ‘trying’ to get it ‘right’ is anathema to its very nature.

But unlike every other form of meditation that I’ve attempted to master, I don’t dread the twice-daily 20 minutes that I’ve committed to dedicate to TM. With other meditations, I would sit down and I would often find it difficult to get my racing thoughts to settle, giving up after 10 minutes because it seemed like a waste of my time.

With TM, I go to that quiet place deeply, quickly, and it feels almost obscenely enjoyable. I can only describe it as being akin to the space between waking and sleep, a blissful stillness. 

I feel more rested. I’m much more energetic than I usually am, particularly in the evenings, and I managed to get through an intensive period of work in half the time it would ordinarily take me.

I have a tendency to be evangelical when I find systems or routines that work for me, advising everyone to follow suit and I’m itching to do the same for TM. 

However, I’m aware that it’s early days yet, so my intention is to keep practicing twice a day for the next six weeks and report back on any changes I see.

But for now? I’m hooked.

If my column has whetted your appetite for all things TM and you want to learn more, pick up a copy of Strength in Stillness: The Power of Transcendental Meditation by Bob Roth.

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See a video of the book launch party that took place in Manhattan with Jerry Seinfeld, Hugh Jackman and his wife Deborra-Lee Furness, and classical guitarist Sharon Isben to celebrate the publication of the life-transforming New York Times bestseller, “Strength in Stillness: The Power of Transcendental Meditation” (Simon & Schuster) by long-time meditation teacher Bob Roth. Jerry, Hugh and Bob reveal what the TM® technique means to them, and how this tool can change your life. They also discuss the work of the David Lynch Foundation bringing TM to thousands in need. Bob is the CEO of the DLF. You can find more articles and interviews with Bob Roth talking about his best-selling book listed on The Uncarved Blog.

Tara Gardner‘s experience and understanding of what makes TM unique among the other meditations she’s tried is also impressive. She nails it in this piece she wrote for Glam: How Transcendental Meditation Gives Me Mental Clarity Like Nothing Else.

Bob Roth interviewed for Starts at 60 during Strength in Stillness book launch in Australia

March 6, 2019

Starts at 60 Writers is an Australian-New Zealand-based group of writers over sixty. Bob Roth did many interviews during his book tour there last year to promote his #1 best-selling Strength In Stillness: The Power of Transcendental Meditation.

Starts at 60 did an excellent interview that resulted in two great articles published in their Mental Health section on Friday and Saturday, March 16 & 17, 2018: Transcendental Meditation saved Hugh Jackman’s family from anxiety and Transcendental Meditation takes off with over-60s.

Bob Roth effectively explains the differences between the two popular meditation approaches—mindfulness and transcendental. He described it as deep meditation, what Maharishi ​used to call it, which became Transcendental Deep Meditation, then Transcendental Meditation, or TM.

I also found it ironic that this was written by writers over 60 for their demographic—the generation that took to Maharishi and his teachings in droves in the 1960s. Obviously many have forgotten about that and may now be discovering TM for the first time, but from a more scientific perspective. So glad the pragmatic Bob Roth presents TM to the world in the down-to-earth way that he does! I corrected a few typos and capitalized Transcendental Meditation, as it should be. Here they are.

Transcendental Meditation takes off with over-60s

Mindfulness and meditation have hit the zeitgeist in recent years, with everyone from Oprah to businessman and housewives singing their praises and crediting the practice with reducing stress levels and anxiety.

While meditation is a term most people are familiar with these days, it’s a particular branch of the calming technique, called Transcendental Meditation (TM), that’s really piqued the interest of the world’s elite.

TM focuses on a deep parts of the mind and is said to be so effective that actor Hugh Jackman enlisted the teachings of TM expert Bob Roth to ease his stress and help his young son cope with anxiety.

Roth, one of the world’s leading experts in TM, recently spoke to Starts at 60 about the many health benefits of the practice and the thousands of people he has taught, including Oprah Winfrey, Ellen DeGeneres, Paul McCartney and Gwyneth Paltrow, to embrace the calming technique throughout his 45-year career.

While there are many different types of meditation around, transcendental focuses on the deep parts of the mind, Roth explains.

“There are mindfulness approaches to meditation which are more on the surface, how to think, how to walk, how to talk, how to act, how to breathe, many different things like that,” he said. “Transcendental is deep meditation, it means it accesses a level of the mind, a quiet, calm level of the mind’s stillness that already exists within everyone.”

TM focuses on thinking inwards rather than outwards and through practice, people have the ability to overcome stress, tension and fatigue and anxiety.

While Roth admits that like many people he was sceptical at first when he first discovered TM in his youth, but quickly changed his mind when he began to see “immediate results”. He also cites “20 peer-reviewed studies that show that TM reduces high blood pressure better than anti-hypertensive medications, without the side effects of anti-hypertensive medications”.

“And that’s research that was published by the US National Institute of Health and research done at Harvard Medical School and published in the American Medical Association’s top journal. It’s very real, when we’re talking about TM, we’re not talking about something on the fringe. It may be an unusual word, but the reality is it’s an established medical tool,” he added.

While he has a black book filled with clients, most of Roth’s clients are ‘everyday’ people, many of them over 6o.

“So an older person who is either in retirement or moving towards retirement or can’t retire but is under a lot of pressure, it’s a wonderful tool to get rid of stress and wake up the brain so we have more energy to do the things we need to do,” he said.

He added that it’s important for people to work TM into their lives and not to use it as a replacement for medication.

“In the toolbox of an older person, there should be many tools that we can draw upon to help us deal with the very real, very deadly epidemic of stress, that we’re all living in,” he said.

“Let’s say you have high blood pressure, you wouldn’t just go online and say, ‘here’s some magic potion online and some recipe and I’m going to take it because it’s going to help my blood pressure’,” he said. “No, you look at stuff that works. Same as meditation, you should look at the research that shows that it works.”

To help the most sceptical, Bob recently released a book called Strength in Stillness. He said that he wanted the book to help people with questions and to make sense of something that people may not be familiar with. “I’m not pushing this on anybody. People should decide for themselves. I wrote the book so people could make an informed decision,” he said.

“The beautiful thing about Transcendental Meditation is you can be 100 per cent sceptical and it works just as well. You can be sceptical about electricity, but when you turn on a light switch, the light goes on.”

Strength in Stillness is currently available in book stores and as an eBook online.

Transcendental Meditation saved Hugh Jackman’s family from anxiety

In an age when mindfulness and practising the art of stillness has become more popular than a bowl full of kale, one particular form of meditation seems to stand out from the crowd: Transcendental Meditation.

The unique form of meditation, which goes beyond mindfulness to produce a deeper and long-lasting sense of peace, has been around for more than 40 years, but has recently shot to the top of the popularity heap thanks to a host of celebrity clients and a rock star teacher.

Bob Roth has taught the likes of Oprah Winfrey, Ellen DeGeneres, Paul McCartney and Gwyneth Paltrow, but his favourite client thus far is The Greatest Showman himself, Hugh Jackman.

“Hugh Jackman and his wife Deborra-Lee Furness are just wonderful,” Roth told Starts at 60. “Down to earth, they have two children, I know the family well. I consider them my friends.”

Roth has been working with the Jackman clan for years and his teachings have been particularly useful for Hugh and Deborra-Lee’s son, Oscar, who suffered from anxiety.

“I taught Oscar to meditate,” Bob revealed. “He’s now 17 and I taught him when he was 12. They have a daughter, Ava, who I think I’m going to teach next year.”

Jackman has praised Roth’s work in the past and said his teachings on how to calm the mind did wonders for Oscar’s mental health.

Bob Roth pictured with Hugh Jackman and Deborra-Lee Furness
Bob Roth pictured with Hugh Jackman and Deborra-Lee Furness. (Getty)

Bob’s really helped us and our son, who was a stressed, anxious kid,” the actor said.

Slightly different to regular forms of meditation, TM focuses on the deep parts of the mind and accesses the quiet, calm and still parts of the brain that exist inside everyone. While it’s a hit with celebrities, Roth’s main clients are ‘everyday’ people, many of them over 60, who are looking for a way to ease stresses and invigorate the mind.

“They run out of energy and they just feel like they don’t have the energy they once had,” he said of his older students. “They’re more vulnerable to aches and pains and illnesses because the immune system is compromised, memory maybe isn’t as clear, and from a long life.”

He said there’s a strong correlation between the kinds of issues his regular students and more high-profile students face.

“Being known by a lot of people does not make you immune from worrying about a sick child or stopping you from staying awake at night because you’re worried about things in your career or your partner,” he said. “They have the same feelings, just like us. They have more money, to what? Buy more sleeping pills?”

Despite his popularity amongst some of Hollywood’s favourite stars, he said he owes his credibility to word-of-mouth. “You can’t seek out a celebrity. You can’t go, ‘I want to teach Tom Hanks’. They live in their own world and it’s almost like a bubble. And they talk to each other a lot,” he said.

More recently, Roth worked with Jackman’s The Greatest Showman co-star Zac Efron who was experiencing some personal issues on set. “So I’ve sort of become the go-to guy for meditation,” he explained. “But I should make a point – I’ve taught maybe 30 or 40 well-known actors. I’ve taught thousands of regular people.

“It’s not, ‘oh this is a 20-year-old veteran’ or ‘this is Hugh Jackman’, really and truly, I see in their eyes, they’re looking for something to help them navigate through life.”

Roth’s book Strength in Stillness is currently available in book stores and online.

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You can see Bob Roth’s global book launch with Hugh and Deboora-Lee introducing Bob about 26 minutes into the second video posted here. Bob also interviews comedian Jerry Seinfeld who has been meditating since he was a college student. The video starts with quotes from celebrity meditators, followed by Good Morning America’s Robin Roberts and George Stephanopoulos interviewing Bob about his book.

ET on TM: Entertainment Tonight news clip on celebs and #TranscendentalMeditation goes viral

February 23, 2018

ET: Stars Love Transcendental Meditation

ET: Why Celebs Are Obsessed With Transcendental Meditation
Entertainment Tonight http://et.tv/2CFjfWU

​Publishedthis high-powered 2-minute news clip shows why so many stars are using this silent practice to really unplug.​ Featured in the report are Katy Perry, Hugh Jackman and Deborra-Lee Furness, Cameron Diaz, Fergie, Chrissy Metz, Jerry Seinfeld, Oprah and Tom Hanks. It’s a veritable free celeb-filled TM promo! Watch it on ET, MSN, AOL, Yahoo, or here: https://goo.gl/CzKDaf.

@GMA’s @RobinRoberts & @GStephanopoulos interview @meditationbob on his new book #StrengthInStillness: The Power of #TranscendentalMeditation

February 6, 2018

Celebrity meditation guru shares simple guide to meditating live on GMA

Good Morning America Marquee

Bob Roth sat down with Robin Roberts and George Stephanopoulos to discuss the benefits of Transcendental Meditation on Good Morning America Live in Times Square. His new book, Strength in Stillness: The Power of Transcendental Meditation, came out today, Feb 6, 2018.

Along with many A-list celebrities who have learned TM from Bob Roth—Oprah Winfrey, David Letterman, Ellen Degeneres, Hugh Jackman, Russell Brand, Katy Perry, Michael J. Fox, Tom Hanks, Martin Scorsese, Stella McCartney, and many more—Robin and George are also students of his.

Bob says, “We’re talking in Transcendental Meditation a medical tool that can just give anyone access whether they believe in it or not. You can be a 100% skeptical. And anyone can learn it—how to allow the active thinking mind to just access calm. And when that happens, your body, according to research, gains a profound state of rest.”

George Stephanopolous and Robin Roberts listen to Bob Roth describe how TM works

Bob Roth describes how TM works to George Stephanopolous & Robin Roberts

Bob explains, “In Transcendental Meditation we just effortlessly access these deeper, quieter, calmer levels that are already there. And it happens effortlessly because the nature of the mind is to be drawn to something more satisfying, and inside, most satisfying.”

Robin adds the notion of having no expectations, then brings up the issue of time, the amount of time needed to meditate for 20 minutes twice a day. Bobby then relates a true, funny story about that.

George says, “I think it creates time. If you do 40 minutes a day, you go through the rest of the 22, 23 hours, feeling more calm, more focused, more connected to everyone around you, and that’s invaluable.”

Robin says, “It calms you and energizes you at the same time. It’s the oddest thing.” George, who was very skeptical when he learned, reiterates, “Exactly!”

I really appreciate how Bob keeps coming back to TM basics in this interview when he describes the nature of our minds at the surface and at the depth. “Transcendental Meditation is a very natural technique that gives effortless access to the stillness that lies within.”

There will be a book launch at Joe’s Pub at The Public in New York City tonight: Jerry Seinfeld, Hugh Jackman, and More To Celebrate The Release of Bob Roth’s STRENGTH IN STILLNESS: THE POWER OF TRANSCENDENTAL MEDITATION. The event will be webcast live Tuesday, Feb. 6 at 7:15 pm EST / 6:15pm CST / 4:15 pm PST on Events at TM.org and Facebook.

They actually started 15 minutes later, so fast forward to watch it below. Hugh Jackman and Deborra-Lee Furness open the evening, then invite Bob Roth up to the stage. Bobby later invites Jerry Seinfeld to join him on stage around 40 minutes in.

Jerry is on for 15 minutes. In the first 7 minutes he shares where he first learned TM as a college student and says it gave him “the greatest rest that there is in the world.” Joking about how busy and tiring it is to live and work in New York City, he tells everyone they need to learn how to recharge naturally. Jerry loves life and says, “TM is the greatest tool for work.”

In the next half of the discussion Jerry talks about his work for the David Lynch Foundation. Bob starts to tell the story of how they asked Jerry to perform for a fundraiser. Jerry takes over and tells it like it was in his own hilarious way, when he found out he was going to be on the same stage that night with Beatles Paul and Ringo who were headlining the first Change Begins Within benefit concert at Radio City Music Hall. He also takes questions from the audience. Definitely one of the highlights of the evening!

Proceeds from today’s event and sales of the book will go towards teaching women and children who are survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault to meditate through the Manhattan Family Justice Center.

Visit the book’s website www.stillnessbook.com and scroll down to see Events & Tour Dates for book signings at locations around the country, some with other celebrities joining Bob Roth. Below that you will also find featured print and online news and stories, as well as a video library with event, television, radio, and podcast appearances.

More News Coverage on Bob Roth and his Book Launch

On Wed, Feb 7, Bob was interviewed by Rosanna Scotto and Lori Stokes on Good Day NY FOX 5 | WNYW. Rosanna posted a photo on Instagram of the 3 of them. The next book event followed that evening at the 92Y On Demand. It was moderated by Tony, Emmy and Golden Globe-winning actress and writer Mary-Louise Parker. Watch their wonderful conversation here.

More news coverage continues to come out. Feb 10, 2018, The Guardian published this excellent article: Top US meditation teacher brings his message to stressed-out BritonsGuru Bob Roth, who numbers Katy Perry and Hugh Jackman among his fans, is to set up a TM project in London schools.

Bob Roth cropped

Bob Roth @Alexander Berg

Bob Roth is the most experienced and sought-after meditation teacher in America. Over the past forty-five years, Bob has taught Transcendental Meditation to thousands of people, from billionaire CEOs to combat-scarred veterans, to at-risk students in violence-filled schools, to leading figures in government, business, medicine, media, the arts, and more. In addition to serving as the CEO of the David Lynch Foundation he also directs the Center for Leadership Performance.

Strength in Stillness—The Power of Transcendental Meditation by Bob RothIn Strength in Stillness, Roth breaks down the science behind meditation in a new, accessible way. He highlights the three distinct types of meditation—focused attention, open monitoring, and self-transcending—and showcases the evidence that the third, Transcendental Meditation, is the most effective and efficient way to reduce stress, access inner power, and build resilience. Free of gimmicks, mystical verbiage, and over-inflated research studies, the book is a simple and straightforward guide to calming mind, body, and spirit.

Watch this excellent book promo containing excerpts from various presentations, interviews, and famous meditators talking about what TM does for them, and others in need, posted on Bob Roth’s @meditationbob Twitter feed and on Amazon: How Transcendental Meditation Helps Relieve Stress and Drive Success.

I just love this funny video clip of Russell Brand and Bob Roth promoting the British and American cover versions of Strength In Stillness. Bob says it’s available in 9 different languages. Watch what Russell has to say about it all.

• Watch a replay of Bob Roth and David Lynch talk about Transcendental Meditation and the work of the David Lynch Foundation. The evening, hosted by Writers Bloc Presents, took place at the Wilshire Ebell Theatre in Los Angeles on Feb 12, 2018.

• Watch Maria Shriver interview Bob Roth on her show Architects of Change.

• Listen to Bob Roth on Marketplace with David Brancaccio.

• Listen to 10% Happier with Dan Harris interview “Bob Roth, Meditation Teacher to the Stars,” Episode #122. Also on iTunes. Apple Podcasts: Spotify: Google Play Music: .

• Town Hall Seattle Feb 15, 2018: Bob Roth and David Lynch Strength in Stillness: The Power of Transcendental Meditation.

• Enjoy TM News: Strength in Stillness: Bob Roth Talks about His New Book, the Rise of Meditation in Our Culture, and the Future of TM. Q&A with the longtime TM teacher and DLF CEO.

• Bob spoke at The Free Library of Philadelphia on Feb 20, 2018. Watch the 51:35 replay on Livestream.

• This ET clip, published Feb 22nd, is going viral: Why Celebs Are Obsessed With Transcendental Meditation | Entertainment Tonight. Here’s why so many stars are using this silent practice to really unplug.

Bob Roth in conversation with Daisy Lowe on Facebook, UK, Feb 27, 2018. Fast-forward about five and a half minutes to start the interview.

• The Bookseller: Tyler, Lowe and McCartney turn out for Roth’s book launch, published February 27, 2018 by Heloise Wood.

• Liz Connor of TV3Exposé in Ireland asks: Could Transcendental Meditation be the key to beating Britain’s stress epidemic?

Bob Roth promotes Strength In Stillness: The Power of Transcendental Meditation on Today Extra, Australia’s popular TV morning show.

Consciousness and Creativity with David Lynch and Bob Roth at Arts Centre Melbourne, Australia, March 10, 2018, on Facebook.

• Consciousness and Creativity with David Lynch and Bob Roth at Art Gallery of New South Wales, Australia, March 10, 2018, on Facebook.

Hollywood’s guru on how to meditate like Oprah, March 14, 2018, stuff: well&good.

Ellen Welcomes Transcendental Meditation Expert Bob Roth, April 2, 2018.

• Red Dirt Report: BOOK REVIEW: “Strength in Stillness” by Bob Roth​, April 17, 2018.

It’s Not What It Seems with Doug Vigliotti: #28 – Bob Roth: The Power of Transcendental Meditation.

Related: Watch an earlier lively interview with Bob Roth on BUILD. Find more articles and interviews with Bob Roth on TM and DLF on The Uncarved Blog.

Two Transcendental Meditation @TMmeditation articles in @THR on @DAVID_LYNCH and @DrOz

January 11, 2014

Here are two excellent articles about Transcendental Meditation published in the latest issue of The Hollywood Reporter, part of a Health series on how stress effects celebrities and what they do to relieve it. One mentions David Lynch, the other, Dr. Oz. Click on titles to see original articles with photos.

How David Lynch and His Hollywood Friends Are Bringing Back Transcendental Meditation

One of film’s darkest directors, with help from Jerry Seinfeld and Hugh Jackman, is shining a light by bringing meditation to everyone from PTSD sufferers to inner-city kids.

January 10, 2014 | by Seth Abramovitch

Call it the ultimate comeback. Transcendental meditation — which involves speaking a silent mantra to oneself for 20 minutes, twice daily — is an ancient practice that is now attracting some of Hollywood’s biggest names, who insist that its stress-relief benefits are nothing short of miraculous: Among its most powerful practitioners are Jerry Seinfeld, Hugh Jackman and Russell Brand — who all have become supporters of David Lynch and his plans to bring meditation to people in dire need of stress relief. A directing genius whose dark dreamscapes are littered with severed ears and plastic-wrapped homecoming queens, Lynch, 67, has morphed into one of the world’s most enthusiastic if unlikely TM cheerleaders.

Lynch first encountered TM in 1974, as he searched for ways to combat mounting anger and depression relating to his epic struggle to get his first feature, the mind-bending Eraserhead, to the big screen. “I had a weakness inside,” says Lynch from his Hollywood Hills studio, a splash of sunlight illuminating his famous white pompadour. “That kind of thing, in this business, you’re a sitting duck. You could get slaughtered.” It was then that he decided to try his hand at TM, an ancient practice revived by the late Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, an expat from India who rocketed to stardom during the 1960s as The Beatles‘ spiritual adviser. Lynch feared TM might dull his artistic edge, but he says the opposite happened — it helped him to access untapped fonts of creativity. He even goes so far as to credit the practice with potentially having saved his life: “I was even thinking at the time, ‘If I didn’t have this meditation, I might have seen that a way out was suicide.’ ”

The Twin Peaks mastermind hasn’t missed a single day of meditation in the 40 years since. In 2005, that devotion led him to found The David Lynch Foundation for Consciousness-Based Education and World Peace, a nonprofit that brings TM to inner-city students, veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder and victims of domestic violence. The foundation has taught the fundamentals to more than 500,000 at-risk candidates, and Lynch says the effects have been astonishing: “Before too long, they’re saying, ‘Thank you very much. I got my life back again.’ ” In celebration of Lynch’s birthday on Jan. 20, DLF Live, the foundation’s live-performance arm, is mounting a benefit at the El Rey Theatre, where Ringo Starr is set to receive the Lifetime of Peace & Love Award. Ben Harper and Ben Folds are slated to perform. And on Feb. 27, Dixie Chicks will headline a night at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel honoring record producer (and longtime TM practitioner) Rick Rubin. For the admittedly shy director, Hollywood’s ongoing love affair with TM offers a highly effective method of spreading the gospel. “Life gets better and better and better,” says Lynch of his 40-year journey. “That’s the long and the short of it.”

Stress-Free 2014: Dr. Oz Reveals How He Takes the Edge Off Shooting a TV Show

The talk show host shares his tips for dialing down the shooting-schedule meltdowns, including sacred mantras.

January 10, 2014 | As told by Dr. Oz

In medical school for cardiothoracic surgery, I learned early on the acute effect of stress on performance, decision-making and emotions. As I  looked inside people’s chests at their hearts, I saw the effect of chronic stress: hypertension, cardiovascular disease, obesity. Stress is the No. 1 driver of aging. It’s downright toxic.

In 2009, we launched The Dr. Oz Show. I found a new type of stress as I acclimated to taping, field shoots, voiceovers, rehearsals, script review and appearances. I continued with surgery on Thursdays. The operating room, once a place of total chaos, became a respite for me, offering a familiarity that grounded me.

This may surprise you, but I see many similarities in making a television show and working in the operating room. In both, a team of experts with diverse job responsibilities is exercising expertise toward a grand outcome — either a healthy patient or a great show. Both require teamwork and careful choreography. Both have a team of technology experts whose job is to keep delicate machinery running. Both are fast-paced. And perhaps most similar: Both involve glaring lights under which you are expected to literally perform magic! Ergo, both involve extraordinary stress.

Like the staff at the hospital, my team at the show had comparable stress, and it showed. Unlike other industries, the world literally sees our mistakes. This provides an additional stress dynamic. I saw scripts so revised that it felt like we were back to square one. Tempers would flare occasionally.

I deployed various measures for the staff at the show to deal with the stress. First, you have to eat the right foods. A certain talk-show host whose studio was across the hall and who shall remain nameless good-naturedly served beer, pretzels and cupcakes for his late-night staff. Our tables served granola, quinoa and 2 percent Greek yogurt. I even sent a few healthy snacks across the hall.

I encourage staff to exercise. I also brought in teachers of transcendental meditation, and each employee receives group and individual training. We do meditations in the office twice daily — at 8 a.m., before morning taping, and at 5 p.m., At these times, an announcement is made over the office intercom, and staffers are encouraged to report to the conference room, where a group meditation takes place. Oftentimes, teachers will give staffers a personal mantra, which is secret, that they then repeat over and over. Keeping it to yourself makes it feel sacred.

These Pret-a-Reporter stories first appeared in the Jan. 17 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.

Style.com: David Lynch and Italo Zucchelli on their creativity and Transcendental Meditation

December 25, 2013

Style.com: The Transcendentalists: David Lynch and Calvin Klein Collection’s Italo Zucchelli on their shared passions: creativity and Transcendental Meditation

By Matthew Schneier. Photographs by Olivia Malone
Published December 24, 2013

On a winding road high in the Hollywood Hills, not far from Mulholland Drive, is a Brutalist-looking concrete structure that’s equal parts manse and bunker. It’s the studio of David Lynch, and appropriately for his many pursuits—he is an auteur across media, from film and television to painting, music, self-help books, and coffee roasting—it has a variety of different spaces: a screening room, a recording studio, storage for his photographs and artwork, a kitchen with an industrial-grade espresso machine. (Lynch die-hards may recognize it as the house from Lost Highway.)

I’ve come here from New York, along with fashion designer Italo Zucchelli, to discuss one of Lynch’s abiding passions, Transcendental Meditation. The director established his own nonprofit, the David Lynch Center for Transcendental Meditation and World Peace, in 2005. He credits the practice with much of his success, and he’s devoted as much time to raising awareness of it as he has to virtually any of his other endeavors. His 2006 book, Catching the Big Fish, is dedicated to the subject.

Transcendental Meditation is an ancient practice, but its profile was raised in our era when the Beatles took it up in 1968, under the guidance of its twentieth-century guru, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. It comes with, and rules out, no religion, faith, or creed, but because of its new-wave aura, it has largely bubbled away at the fringes of culture. Lately, however, it is experiencing a new boom. “In the last year, something tipped,” says Bob Roth, the affable executive director of The David Lynch Foundation for Consciousness-Based Education and World Peace. “If one [particular] thing happened, I haven’t seen it—and I’ve been on the front lines. But something happened, [because] I don’t have enough teachers to teach all the people in New York City who want to learn.”

TM has a very healthy celebrity fan base, which no doubt helps its public profile, and the foundation, which exists to provide scholarships to at-risk populations so they can learn the practice, including schoolchildren, survivors of domestic abuse, and military personnel, has taken advantage of that fact. Paul McCartney, a practitioner, performed at the foundation’s first benefit concert. Hugh Jackman and Jerry Seinfeld, Transcendental Meditators both, were honored at its most recent benefit gala, in December. Mario Batali and Martin Scorsese will both speak at its upcoming conference in February. The list of adherents is even longer. Ellen DeGeneres does it. Oprah does it. Ray Dalio, the founder of Bridgewater Associates, the world’s largest hedge fund, does it. And in the realm of fashion, so does Zucchelli, who is celebrating his tenth year as creative director of menswear for Calvin Klein Collection.

“It” is a relatively simple practice. It consists of devoting twenty minutes twice a day to meditating, which in the Transcendental iteration means silently chanting a Sanskrit mantra. (The mantra must be given by a teacher of Transcendental Meditation, as part of an instruction that can cost upwards of $1,000.) Devotees say that it combats stress, improves mood, and staves off illness and disease. Remarkably, science confirms much of this. The American Heart Association found in a study that Transcendental Meditation, alone among meditation practices it tested, reduces high blood pressure; other studies indicate it can improve functional capacity in patients with congestive heart failure. Over the past forty years, more than 300 studies have been published about the effects of the practice in peer-reviewed medical journals, and the National Institutes of Health and the Department of Defense have both given millions for further testing. While a quick Google search does turn up skeptics and critics—more of charlatan practitioners than of the practice itself—the tide seems to be now firmly in TM’s favor.

“In 1968, meditation was a fad,” says Roth. “In 2013, because of the research, Transcendental Meditation is being incorporated into the actual fabric of our culture.”

There’s something undeniably intriguing about the beatific bliss that Lynch and Zucchelli radiate—in the filmmaker’s case, in stark contrast to his dark, often violent work. I wanted to find out more about the connection they both draw between the practice and their creative lives. Below, condensed and edited, is a transcript of that free-flowing discussion.

Visit Style.com to read this intriguing interview and see the photos.

See David Lynch on Esquire Network, How I Rock It, talking about Transcendental Meditation.

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Celebs who meditate featured in The Daily Beast

April 24, 2013

This article on Transcendental Meditation was one of the rotating stories on The Daily Beast today, April 23, 2013. It was the 9th top story of rotating images in the big box on the upper left corner of the home page. The article appeared as a result of Rupert Murdoch learning to meditate last weekend. It was supposed to be private, but he tweeted about it and drew media attention. Click on the links below to see photos and descriptions of the 14 featured meditating celebs.

Celebs who meditate -The Daily Beast

Celebs Who Meditate – The Daily Beast – Invision/AP; WireImage

Oprah & More Stars Who Do Transcendental Meditation

The Daily BeastTranscendental Meditation has made its rounds with celebrities as far back as when the Beatles were a unit, but is once again creeping up as the latest trend among celebrities. Rupert Murdoch recently tweeted on his indoctrination into the mantra meditation movement, Oprah Winfrey devoted an entire show to it, and David Lynch even launched a nonprofit foundation for the practice.

The technique was established in India by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in the 1950s and has spread worldwide since, used as a means to relieve stress and build personal development. The practice involves twice-a-day, 15- to 20-minute meditations, and courses are taught by certified instructors for a fee. See which other stars are endorsing the practice and taking time for some inner peace!

Read celebrity descriptions and view all (15) photos in fullscreen. Most of these celebrities, in order of appearance, practice and/or are connected with TM in some way: Rupert Murdoch, David Lynch, Russell Brand, Shirley MacLaine, Sheryl Crow, Paul McCartney, Oprah Winfrey, Moby, Katy Perry, Howard Stern, Hugh Jackman, George Lucas, Clint Eastwood, and Candy Crowley.

Read a related article: 14 Executives Who Swear By Meditation–10 do TM.

Also see Why CEOs, actors, and pop stars love Transcendental Meditation | Well+Good NYC and What do Stephen Collins, Ellen DeGeneres, Russell Brand, Russell Simmons, David Lynch and Oprah have in common? and The New York Times: Look Who’s Meditating Now.

DETAILS: critical eye: Meditation Nation

August 14, 2011

Meditation Nation

Power brokers no longer motivate or medicate—they meditate. How Transcendental Meditation returned as the new status symbol.

Photograph by Adam Voorhes
September 2011 Issue

A funny thing happened on the way to enlightenment. The quest got stripped of yogic posturing, Buddhist trappings, and even the last vestige of spirituality and turned into a search for the kind of clarity that might help us all in our worldly pursuits. Which is why movers and shakers are again embracing that seventies mainstay Transcendental Meditation. You’re likely to hear it spoken of reverentially in interviews: Russell Brand, whose wildman behavior was cartoonish in its intensity, credits TM with helping him to conquer his heroin, sex, and alcohol addictions. “After meditation,” he has said, “I felt this beautiful serenity and selfless connection.” And where celebrities venture (the latest wave of TM-ers includes the likes of Hugh Jackman and Naomi Watts), many of us are likely to follow. The rolls of practitioners have tripled in the past three years, according to the Transcendental Meditation Program, the practice’s national organization.

“The game-changer, I think, is David Lynch and his foundation,” says Dr. Norman E. Rosenthal, the Georgetown University psychiatry professor who wrote the recent best seller Transcendence: Healing and Transformation Through Transcendental Meditation. Lynch, the surrealist director of Twin Peaks, Blue Velvet, and Mulholland Dr., had been quietly practicing TM since, yes, the seventies, but about six years ago he came out of the closet, launching a foundation to promote the practice and later publishing a manifesto, Catching the Big Fish: Meditation, Consciousness, and Creativity.

It’s a process perfectly matched to our self-interested times—”no pain, but a lot of gain,” according to Rosenthal. Bob Roth, an executive director of the David Lynch Foundation, who taught TM to Brand and Moby, explains that when the mind has been calmed with the help of a mantra, a Sanskrit word given to each TM grad, it will effortlessly sink below the level of thought to “pure consciousness.” Practically speaking, sit in a chair, close your eyes, and silently repeat the mantra for 20 minutes. Once you get the hang of it, Lynch says, you cut the elevator cables of your normal-thinking mind to descend to a place that feels different. You may experience a connection with the universe or a mental light show, what Rosenthal calls “four-star graphic effects.” At the very least, you should be blissfully relaxed, which is the foundation of the health benefits that have been measured in the medical research amassed, much of it funded by the government. The deep tranquillity TM promotes quiets the body’s “fight or flight” stress response, lowering blood pressure and anxiety and combating depression.

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the so-called giggling guru, who hosted the Beatles and Mia Farrow, among others, was the innovator who stripped Hindu meditation practice of its religious baggage and repackaged it as a systematic, stress-reducing, creativity-building technique. Lynch, a disciple, is responsible for adding a fresh civic-mindedness to the game. His foundation aims to bring TM free of charge to those most in need of its calming effects—at-risk kids, prison inmates, veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress. That, of course, means fund-raising benefits, which means reeling in rich folk and entertainers (many introduced to TM by Lynch and Roth), all of which attracts media coverage and an increased brand awareness among those in the general public who might be willing to shell out $1,500 for the basic course.

“It was straight out of The Great Gatsby,” Rosenthal says of the poolside benefit party thrown this past June at the Malibu home of Juicy Couture cofounder Pam Levy and her TV-director husband, Jefery Levy. One imagines the vibes spreading to their neighbor Ryan Kavanaugh, CEO of Relativity Media, the freshly minted Converse-wearing, 36-year-old movie mogul who practices TM twice a day. Kavanaugh, who started out as a stockbroker, has leveraged his connections by allying with the New York hedge fund Elliot Associates, among other investors, giving his company the billions required to dominate Hollywood film production. But his secret weapon is his risk-assessment algorithm, a high-tech quantitative analysis of the big picture that he says allows him to make money even on box-office dogs.

As the New York hard-chargers who flock to the TM courses Roth teaches at the Center for Leadership Performance soon learn, this kind of success is not coincidental. According to published research, TM enhances neural activity in the part of the brain that houses the decision-making “executive center.” “The businesspeople say they’re more focused during the day,” Roth says. As do the other Gotham heavy hitters who’ve evangelized for TM and the Lynch Foundation, from Jerry Seinfeld and Heather Graham to Ben Foster and Howard Stern. Leave it to Mr. Katy Perry himself, speaking at a gala fund-raiser at the Metropolitan Museum of Art this past winter, to get at the essence of TM’s guilt-free marriage of creativity and commerce: “I literally had an idea drop into my brain the other day while I was meditating which I think is worth millions of dollars.”

Also on Details.com
Celebrity Om-Meter: The Top 10 Moments in Meditation History
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How to Avoid the Office Strain
Guy-Friendly Alternatives to Yoga

Prop Styling by Robin Finlay

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